Flashing, strobing lights & metaphorical lynched black bodies at a metal burlesque show on a Tuesday night in Philly. Hi, my name is Shay Au Lait. Im a burlesque performer. Most often that manifests through spoken word & dance when I’m on stage. (I produce & teach as well.) I’m a part of a few troupes. Siren Pack, 100% Queer, and of course SlutChurch produced by HoneyTree EvilEye where I was slapmized as the Patron Taint of Big Dicks and named the BadonkaMONK. I also have a background in theater & I love incorporating aerial work into my performances too such as pole or hoop or hammock.
Burlesque to me, as defined by SpeakEasy Noir is emotional storytelling, extreme parody & extravagant reveals. There are many genres & styles. I self-define as erotic-noir, as I’m a hybrid. My work includes fetish/BDSM burlesque, showgirl, nerdlesque & neo-burlesque to name a few, so I landed on EROTIC-NOIR, as my own style. At SlutChurch, our shows are quite action-packed. We get the honor of performing 2 twenty-minute sets. With metal & rock as our constant, we all weave all kinds of tales & experiences on stage. During our 2021 season, I’ve intentionally been taking a particular journey with my own rituals on stage & this particular performance was a consecration for me beginning with Strange Fruit. Some got the reference & some didn’t. (It’s also a longer, more involved act I hope to bring back once the pandemic really is in a different place.)
This was also my birthday show & celebration & was all the things I wanted & didn’t know I wanted. To some, this art form is pure entertainment. To others, there are layers to this shit. I love that for both types. I personally feel power exchanges of platonic, playful erotic energy need to be experienced within community more. Underneath that I believe understanding & transmuting the power of our erotic energy is essential to being fully whole & self-actualized humans & gods. Because it’s immersive, and interactive & I come from theater, my range in one night might reveal 20 different stories. Here are some moments all captured by Redlite Photography.